This week 30 years ago: LA gang warfare movie Colors blamed for inspiring drive-by shooting

The Gazette 30 years ago

The Gazette 30 years ago - Credit: Archant

Three men were gunned down in what police feared could be a copycat shooting, inspired by a brutal gang warfare film which MPs had tried to ban.

They feared the movie Colors - about teenage gangs in Los Angeles - might have sparked off a wave of copycat violence in Hackney. In the movie gangs “cruise” the streets in cars, taking pot shots at rivals. John Lionel was almost blinded in one eye when he was blasted with a shotgun outside Trends nightclub in Amhurst Road, Stoke Newington, where he was talking to his friends Stephen Regan and Lorne Williams. Two men had pulled up in a cream car and fired twice, before speeding off.

Mr Lionel was rushed to Barts Hospital with injuries to his eyes, face and shoulder, and doctors fought to save his sight.

Det Supt Michael McCullagh of the crack crime squad said: “We are considering the Colors angle, because it is that sort of cruising and shooting attack.”